Unique Grand Egyptian Museum 6 Facts about this museum.

The Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM), nestled close to the Pyramids of Giza, is a testament to thousands of years of Egyptian civilization. While the awe-inspiring collection is enough to captivate any visitor, our experience was made truly unforgettable by our guide. Here’s a detailed account of our journey through the echoing halls of history.

The Grand Egyptian Museum has launched a limited trial visit program for completed areas of the complex that are now open to the public for enjoyment. While an advance reservation is no longer required for a visit to the GEM under the Trial Visits Program, daily slots are limited and occasionally sell out in advance. As a result, an advance online reservation is still recommended.

Before purchasing trial visit tickets, you should watch the November/December 2023 GEM Updates video to ensure that you fully understand which areas of the GEM will be open and accessible during your trial visit, as well as which areas will remain closed until the museum’s full public opening soon.

History and Design

Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s president, announced plans in 1992 to build a new museum to house the country’s ancient artifacts. The Egyptian Museum in Cairo, in particular, had become overcrowded, dimly lit, and susceptible to traffic vibrations. The Ministry of Culture chose a location outside Cairo that is away from the traffic but close enough to provide easy access for tourists. In 2002, it held an international design competition and laid the groundwork.

The design contract was awarded in 2003 to Dublin-based firm Heneghan Peng Architects. Construction began in 2005, but there were numerous delays. Political unrest during the Arab Spring in 2011 and President Mubarak’s subsequent resignation brought work to a halt for three years. The project was restarted in 2014 with international funding, only to be interrupted again in 2020 by the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Work eventually resumed, and the first private tours were offered in 2022. The official opening is scheduled for 2023.

Setting the Stage

As we approached the grand entrance of The Grand Egyptian Museum, its modern façade stood in stark contrast to the ancient relics within. But as soon as we entered, it was like stepping back in time. We were not just in a museum; we were about to embark on a voyage through millennia.

Meeting our Guide

Among the throngs of visitors and museum staff, we met our guide – a tall, spirited individual with a glint of passion in his eyes. From the moment he began narrating, it was evident that to him, these weren’t just artifacts – they were living memories.

A Journey Back in Time

Our guide had an incredible knack for weaving stories. Instead of just describing artifacts, he took us on a chronological journey. Starting from the pre-dynastic era, we moved seamlessly through the Old, Middle, and New Kingdoms.

Every statue had a tale, every hieroglyph a message. Our guide would often act out scenes, mimicking pharaohs, priests, and commoners, bringing the bygone eras to life. His voice echoed in the vast halls, painting vivid images of life along the Nile, the grandeur of the pharaohs, and the intricacies of ancient Egyptian rituals.

Interactive Learning

What made the experience unique was our guide’s interactive teaching style. He would often quiz us, prompting discussions among our group. This wasn’t just a tour; it was an immersive history lesson.

At the Tutankhamun exhibit, instead of just showcasing the golden mask or the intricately designed jewelry, our guide narrated the young king’s life story, his mysterious death, and the significance of the discoveries in his tomb. He connected the dots, making us realize the real people behind the treasures.

Deep Dive into Culture

Apart from just history, our guide took great care in explaining the cultural significance of the exhibits. He spoke of the ancient Egyptians’ belief in the afterlife, their daily life, their art, and their architecture. We learned not just about kings and queens, but about scribes, soldiers, and commoners.

Wrapping up the Day

As the tour concluded, our feet were tired but our spirits were high. With the setting sun casting a golden hue on the museum, we thanked our guide. It wasn’t just a tour we had experienced, but a deep dive into a civilization that continues to captivate the world.

In Conclusion

The Grand Egyptian Museum is a marvel in itself. But our guide transformed it from a simple visit to an unforgettable journey. We left with not just photographs, but memories and stories that we’ll cherish and share. For anyone visiting, while the artifacts will draw you in, it’s the stories that will make you stay. And for that, we’ll always be grateful to our amazing guide.

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